Chop, Cut, Rebuild: DB_1's Ranger...again | Page 10 | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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Chop, Cut, Rebuild: DB_1's Ranger...again

Ok kiddies, time for my bi-annual rebuild thread:p:
This time I won't be messing with the suspension...well, maybe the coilovers.
I may need new coils so I don't have so much uptravel but I'll deal with that much later.

Since i'm barely working progress will be slow since I'll need a few parts and whatnot to get my rig functional again. Main things I need to purchase are new leaf springs. They are totally shot and to have them rebuilt I can buy a new set of Toy springs which i'm gonna try out.

In the mean time, i've been removing stuff that either is damaged and won't be used again or just removing to get it out of the way while I work on stuff.

Here's my list so far:

Front bumper tubework: This will get reworked to accommodate the winch.
Front fenders: Thrashed beyond repair
Rocksliders: Been wanting to build new ones anyways so good as time as any to cut them off.
Rocker panels: Want to get the sliders up higher so they had to go.
Bed: Also trashed beyond repair, tubework will go in it's place
Gutted supercab area: Needed to remove for roof repair but may leave it that way and spray it with undercoating.

That's what i've done so far to the rig and I got my winch mounted today as well. I bought this winch early last summer before the roll and it's a SuperWinch Rock 9.5 short drum with synthetic rope.
I was pondering how i'd fit the grill back on since it sits behind it but i'd still need to access the freespool lever. My plan is to have it on hinges so I can flip it up, i'll just need a way to lock it in place at the bottom...maybe with Dzus fastners.

So on with the pics, i'll start with some before pics of the roof caved in and then with some of the roof almost where I want it. Still needs work obviously.
Other pics show the rockers cut and some general shots of the truck in its current condition. Last set of shots is of the winch install and grill mock up.

















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<----Super Jealous...:p:

..Borrow several cameras as this should be Epic, and we want to see it all...:biggthump

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..Borrow several cameras as this should be Epic, and we want to see it all...:biggthump

I'm sure there will be several cameras on hand, last years thread on Pirate has some vids and pics. I'll post a link unless someone finds it before me. I'll have my point and shoot camera and plan to take some video from different points on my truck.

Finally got the body mount bushings installed. The bushings under the drivers and pass. side doors didn't want to come out despite all the prying, pounding and copious amounts of heat I applied to it, finally ended up sawzalling them off. Turns out the metal sleeves were severely mushroomed preventing them from separating. I'm sure Ford never designed them to be flexed that hard.


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Time for a damage report after my trail run last weekend. Pass. side bumper was pushed up a few inches, dented rock sliders in a couple areas, bent trans. crossmember, bent gas tank and T-case skidplates, dented muffler tube which is above framerails and separated the tube from the muffler (muffler clamp), sheared off a zirk fitting on bottom side of knuckle, doors dented and scraped.

Cut off the front bumper and went over the suspension and steering hardware. I noticed something was knocking like something was loose whenever I would turn.
Thought it was my control arms but it was my drag link and panhard bar so I got those bolts snugged up.

Some pics











For now, just build a new bumper and straighten out the gas tank skidplate since the front edge is now pointing down. Everything else I can live with for now and with summer coming, i'd like to keep the rig together for some runs.
If I tear into it now, I probably won't finish at the rate I work at and end up sitting over the summer until it cools down.

Update-ish...bought a jeep yj winch bumper from Barnes 4X4 sometime back and will add some tubework to it at a later date. Ended up cutting around 3" off the frame horns, all the holes and ripples in the frame made it difficult to drill the holes I needed. Capped off the frame then added some 2x4 box steel to make mounting easier. I can mount the winch but I need to buy some battery cables that will reach to the bed where I want to mount the battery, currently it's in the cab. I'll run it without the winch for now.
Next I got my hi lift mounted in the bed. This is the first time ever I've had it hard mounted so it's nice to have a permanent home for it. With the spare tire up against it, there's hardly any movement or rattles except for the base.
I was at the off road expo and bought some rescue tape, my plan was to wrap the fuel filler hose. The thing is only about a year old and starting to crack already so today I did a full wrap around the entire lenght of the hose. We'll see how it holds up.


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Are you going to run thicker tube this time for the bumper? Will you do the same design?

Are you going to run thicker tube this time for the bumper? Will you do the same design?

I think I'll stick with the same tubing and live with the fact that it will be a disposable item. That last trip I did was like 5 years of hard wheelin in one day.

Looks like you had a fun trip! Any wheeling photos? New bumper start looks nice.

Thanks...I haven't been wheelin since that trip I posted up about but I'm going on the explorer run this weekend. Hopefully there will be some cameras out. Work got busy again so truck mods will be on the backburner for now.

My post Truckhaven report...truck ran and performed great out there, no new damage.
I did have an annoying popping sound from what I thought was coming from the control arm joints. I thought they were worn out and might blow up any second. Looked over the truck yesterday and discovered a loose body mount bolt so I got that tightened up but need to get it off road to see if that cured it.
Other than that it's just general maintenance and a laundry list of small projects that need to be done.

-mag mount CB antenna...old one got crunched in my rollover a few years ago and never got a new one

-wire up winch...want to relocate battery near the hi-lift jack first.

-reinstall stereo system

-finish tubework on bumper

-build a stronger transmission dented up on an off roading trip last spring.

-order some new LED rock lights...used to run some $15 WalMart specials but the bulbs just don't last.

Some pics courtesy of the Truckhaven thread


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Truck is looking good Dave! Looking forward to seeing the front tube work done.

I have been happy with my Vision X Tantrum rock light kit. It comes with 8 LED pods, central junction box, control box and wireless remote. They run about $120 for the kit but I think it is a pretty good deal. I don't know why they are not more popular.

A dual Brian lol. Thanks guys, i'll check them out. I was looking into the pods for light, Ted has a line on some for cheap.

I don't remember:

I see you covered the holes in the top of the cab, but did you plan on keeping the bed separate from the cab (cage wise) or is that coming back? I'm loving the look you've got going right now. Looking forward to seeing you complete the front bumper.

Your truck has definitely taken the top spot of my favorite rangers on this site. It never made it lower than 2nd, but it's #1 now.

Thanks Colin...Yeah I cut the tubes from the cage in the cab that tied into the bed and patched the holes. That includes the tubework that surrounded the rear window outside the cab. I really need to solid mount the cab for all that to work since the tube bangs against the cab.

I'm really liking these Tacoma leaf springs...i've been through a set of stock springs with lift blocks, 2 sets of 6" Skyjackers and a custom set of Nationals but these current springs have by far outperformed them all. At full stuff, the leafs are perfectly flat with no negative arch and an inch of shock shaft showing. I'd still like to install bumpstops for good measure.

Been getting some work done here and there when I have time. Made a new home for the battery under the pass. Side rear "fender". I'd like to enclose that section the battery is in for storage but that's a project for another time.
Also reinstalled some much needed tunes, i took everything out when i built the cage. Added some square tubing to the back wall of the cab to make mounting the amp and subwoofer easier.
Next on the list is to get some battery cables to extend the winch leads to where the battery is. Also hope to work on the front bumper this week or weekend.


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Nice. I have the same subwoofer in my '60 Dart :D It was originally in the Pumpkin.


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